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12 hours, 53 minutes ago 0

Please consider joining Jim Begley, Mike Matthews nd I for this unique photographic experience!




the pilgrim


1 day, 6 hours ago 9

I was editing some older images and came upon the one above.  I starred at for a long time, and it came to me, the title of the entry.  Life is not always easy, sometimes it’s down right hard, hard as a rock!  Since we all must face tough times, how do we find solutions, or at least peace?  Jesus gave very specific instructions, “Give your burdens to me for my yoke is light.”  Jesus knows how to bare heavy burdens, and He wants you and I to release our troubles into his care.  His desire is that you not have to carry those burdens, but trust in Him!


For many years I did not understand the scripture passage that said, “Seek first the Kingdom of God and all these things will be added unto you.”  The previous scripture and named all of our needs in life.  If Jesus would give His own life that we may be forgiven for our sins, how much more does He want to help you rise above the difficult times, and meet your needs.  Many times we make the mistake of seeing Jesus as “just” a man!  It’s true that He came down to earth to live like us and face all we faced, and teach us how to rise above it, but He is God’s Son, His power is beyond anything we could ever imagine!  Nothing is out of His reach.


The next time you feel your world is spinning out of control, lean on the man that made the world, Jesus!


In Him,


the pilgrim

2 days, 11 hours ago 8


Most lens manufacturers now supply a hood with each new lens which is nice, but, the problem is that most of those hoods bayonet on!  So what’s wrong with that?  Actually nothing except if you use a polarizer you have to remove the hood to adjust the polarizer and then re-install the hood and take the chance of knocking the polarizer out of position. Frankly it’s a hassle.  Then there are the hoods that do not bayonet on securely, or are hard to align!  So what to do?


Thankfully, my preferred kind of hood, metal screw in, are now readily available from Amazon to fit almost any lens.  I know what you’re thinking because I was thinking the same thing, how do you know if it will work, and not vignette? Here are a few suggestions:


(1)  Go onto Amazon and search for Screw In Lens Hood 62mm*(*or whatever size you need).  This will bring ups a large variety of hood s in that size!






2.  Compare the hoods shown to the one supplied with your lens. When you find something you believe will work, that appears about the same depth,  ( distance from the front of the hood back to the threads)  Order that hood!  There are a lot of different kinds, and I will address that in a following point!  What if it doesn’t work? Amazon is great about returns!


3.  How do you know if it works?  First I try not to use the scalloped (flower pedal design) hoods because if you turn them with the polarizer they have different wings on the top and bottom, but when turned can vignette!  My personal preference is the round hoods.  Once you get a hood and screw it into your polarizer, and polarizer is already screwed into the lens, go outside and shoot the blue sky at f 16.  If the corners are dark, you have vignetting.  For wide angles in the 28mm range to normal lens in the 50mm range I like the Vented type lens hood below.  I have the same lens hood, in the appropriate size, on my 35mm, & 50mm equivalent lenses.





(4.)  For longer lenses 85mm and longer you need deeper hoods and this is a little harder, because you want the hood deep enough to shade the front of the lens well, but not long enough to vignette!  I had a special problem with my Fuji 60mm Macro lens.  It had a gigantic bayonet on hood and I wanted something much smaller, but it had a thread size of 39mm!!!  I was sure I could never find a hood that would work, but Amazon is amazing I found the hood below which is a perfect fit and much more compact yet deep enough!  * Note this time when I searched i did not see the same hood in black, but I’m sure it will come back in stock, but this is the same lens hood!




Another example was the 56mm f 1.2 lens from Fuji had a 62mm thread and is the equivalent of a 85mm lens (angle of view).  I knew Nikon made a great hood for their 85mm f 1.8 and I had a couple of them, sure enough it fit perfectly, and did not vignette!  The Nikon HN-23 is almost $90.!!!  but a company named Vello makes the identical, and I mean identical,  hood for far, far less, check it out below!  I know, I bought one!!!




O.K., you may be asking is it really worth all this trouble???!!!  For most folks, probably not, but if you feel the tactile aspect of photography, everything working smoothly and reliably, and that this speeds up the process, and if you think this will add up to making better images???  Then you have your answer to the question!




the pilgrim


5 days, 11 hours ago 8

Every time I do an equipment blog I get emails with questions and a recent one made me realize I may have not explained some things as well as I thought I had.  So let me take another shot at it!  If you are young or youngish, and you don’t mind carrying a heavy photo back pack or shoulder bag, go out and enjoy your weekend, this isn’t for you!!!!  If your that other guy or gal, please read on!

If you are a photo generalist, (nature, travel, landscape, Americana, and family pictures), then you need several things;


(1)   The right set of lens focal lengths to cover all the “reasonable” possibilities.  For me that is a wide angle or wide angle zoom, a medium  lens or medium zoom, and a telephoto lens or zoom). Since we all still speak of focal lengths if they were film camera focal length (we did do that for a long time, so it seems to stick), So my system is either a 21mm or 15mm to 36mm, a 50mm or 27mm to 80mm, and a 85mm or 80mm to 300mm zoom. One last thing, I love close-up work so I carry the 90mm Micro and a few diopters.


(2)   A way to carry the gear that makes it readily available, but not a burden to carry.  (once again just for me around 15 pounds is my limit!)  My “current”, and I say current because this is life, and things do change.  For now it’s the Think Tank belt system or the Think Tank Retrospective 5 bag!


(3)  The Will Power to resist breaking the plan and adding more things!!!!  Trust me this is a big one!  I do have and use other things, but they are relegated to bags in the SUV.  It is imperative that you have a “Carry system”!  The rest are just extras you won’t carry!


(4)  Remember the quote from Rod Planck, “Technique beats equipment, every time!”  Live by it, and improve your technique, that will do the most good if  you want to to move to the skill level you desire!


Now, why is any of this important?  Because if you are confident in the gear you are using, you will forget about it, except when bloggers like me, bring it up, again!  You need to know that you can use what you are carrying to make the images you want to make.  After that, simple, just go out and make images!


Hope that clears it up, or feel free to email or post your questions!  Just keep one thing in mind, use what you like, and what you can afford and stop worrying!




the pilgrim